A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
The children hide the fact that they are unsupervised for the day, and lie to maintain their situation.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that there are some good moral issues to discuss here, and some powerful insights into people and the reasons why they act the way they do.
Is It Any Good?
Ralph Fletcher teaches writing, and he teaches teachers how to teach writing; here, he shows that he knows what he's talking about. Written in simple language, this is a tour de force with an emotional climax and some big questions left at the end for readers to wrestle with.
The children in this class are vividly alive, each a three-dimensional person with strengths and faults, all of which will be recognizable to child readers. As they bicker their way through the day they achieve, almost in spite of themselves, something they're proud of, though their parents and school are horrified by what they have done. Though the teacher, Mr. Fabiano, appears only at the end, his presence is felt on every page -- it's a portrait, both brilliant and realistic, of a truly gifted teacher. Funny, real, and powerfully moving, this exceptional novel will leave both students and teachers with a lot to think about.
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